Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Pear and cardamom cake

pear and cardamom cake

I’m trying to let go of my perfectionist tendencies. They aren’t always that helpful. Last week I finished “Bird by Bird” by Anne Lamont. She said “they keep us standing back or backing away from life; they keep us from experiencing life in a naked and immediate way”. The challenge was on to drop this bad habit of mine.

I know if I want to write better I have to loosen up a bit. A couple of weeks before reading the book my wonderful friend Nic was over. We were having a cooking afternoon in my flat and she made a savoury loaf cake with feta and olives. She broke all the cardinal cake baking rules. She didn’t sift the flour. Gasp. She didn’t wait for the oven to preheat. Gasp. She opened the door whilst it was cooking. Gasp… Ultimately it was fantastically tasty so all my worrying was in vain. It was a really lovely afternoon.

pear and cardamom

As part of an effort to dampen down my "uptightness" I decided to try a new recipe for a cake idea I had in my brain, tempting me, for the past few months. The said cake was a pear and cardamom sponge. This recipe was taken from the fantastic “Girl Interrupted Eating” blog. This blog is really wonderful; full of lovely seasonal, nose to tail type recipes. This cake recipe is essentially a framework allowing you to adapt your cake to the ingredients you want to add. It seemed to good to be true. What if it didn’t work? What if those ingredients were wasted? What about those starving children in Africa? I need not have worried. The cake was delicious, light and intriguing. Panic over. I’ve just taken a few baby steps. The process to try to put things in perspective is one that will continue. The next challenge is to transfer that principle from the kitchen to the world beyond.

pear and cardamom cake

Pear and cardamom cake - taken from "girl interrupted eating"
Oven preset to 175 degrees, 9-inch spring form cake tin

175g butter at room temperature
175g caster sugar
3 eggs
175g of pear- grated
175g self raising flour
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
4 cardamom seeds ground

Prepare the tin by greasing and dusting the tin with flour.
Mix together the sugar and butter with an electric whisk until smooth.
Add in the eggs and mix.
Stir in the grated pear.
Mix the flour with the bicarbonate of soda and ground cardamom, add this to the mixture and fold in.
Pour into a tin and bake for approx 35 minutes or until golden on top and skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.


all gone...on my hips


  1. This post is absolutely beautiful! I love the simple, fresh photos you've taken...the perfectionist in you should be proud :-) This cake looks delicious too and great idea to adapt with different ingredients as you like. I want to do some autumnal baking this weekend so will give it a go!

  2. I can relate...it's good to let go of perfectionism and see what amazingly wonderful things happen....so often what is 'perfect' is simply a measurement that we have created in our minds and isn't allowing room for so many other fantastic developments...like this cake! Looks delicious!

    xo Emily

  3. gasp! this looks yummmmm! xxx

  4. Oh my......this looks delicious. I'm so glad you wrote this. Really enjoying reading your thoughts on these. can't wait for the next one.

  5. looks so delicious .. thanks for sharing .. like it ..

  6. "All gone, on my hips" HAHA! true so true for me too... Love this cake.. looks good and CARDAMON.

  7. This looks so good! And I love all the pictures.